Skype and Telus have announced that they have signed an agreement that will allow Telus smartphone customers to purchase Skype Credit through their existing Telus accounts and take advantage of Skype's low-cost calling rates to keep in touch with friends and family both in Canada and abroad. In addition, the deal includes Telus launching the Skype edition LG Optimus Black, the first Skype edition smartphone in the Canadian market.
Skype's international calling rates work for both landlines and mobile phones through Skype Out calling. Telus customers can also enjoy unlimited Skype-to-Skype voice calls and instant messaging to users around the globe. Telus will also champion Skype offerings and make them easier to use with customer service team members ready, willing, and able to help set up accounts and troubleshoot in store, at Telus' exclusive Learning Centres, and on the phone.
Skype will be sharing more information about the products it will be bringing to Canadians with Telus this summer. The VoIP giant has not made any indication that this deal is exclusive to just Telus, but at the same time it has not made a peep about other telecommunications companies in Canada, such as Rogers or Bell.
"People want to take their Skype conversations with them on-the-go, wherever they are, whether it’s on a laptop, or increasingly, via their mobile phones," Russ Shaw, Skype vice-president and general manager of Mobile, said in a statement. "Telus will enable Canadian consumers to get the best Skype experience on their smartphones and it will truly change the way people communicate with their friends and family either here or abroad."
"We believe that by developing a deep relationship with leading global communications brands that our customers already know and enjoy, such as Skype, Telus can provide a superior customer experience that leverages the best of what those brands have to offer and empowers our customers to choose the services they want and need," David Fuller, chief marketing officer at Telus, said in a statement. "By bringing Canadians their choice of the best communication technologies we offer our customers the freedom to customize their mobile experience with the services they want, when and how they want. And when you experience these services on Canada’s fastest* coast-to-coast 4G network, it’s a perfect match."
Following rumors that Google, Facebook, and Microsoft were all interested in the Skype, the software giant swooped in. Last month, Microsoft announced that it was acquiring Skype for $8.5 billion in cash. The deal was approved by the boards of directors of both companies, and is Microsoft's largest acquisition to date.